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Chumbaniya's New Year's Resolution Tasty Washboard Abs and Toning Blog Watch

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    Not quite the seesion I was supposed to do today, since there was a guy in the gym today looking to learn power cleans and Steve (a pretty strong olympic lifter, 145kg clean and jerk) was going through them with him so I joined in instead of doing some of the later parts of my heavy upper session.

    Bench
    20 x12
    50 x5
    60 x5
    72.5 x3
    80 x3

    DB Incline Bench
    16 x20
    16 x16
    16 x10

    Rows

    40 x8
    60 x8
    60 x8
    60 x8


    Power Cleans
    4 sets with 50kg, about 5-7 reps per set but I wasn't counting, just working on form.

    The bench wasn't quite what I thought I could get but since I've only done singles with 80kg or more before I can't really complain as my bench is now stronger than it's ever been. My endurance on the high rep incline benching was better aswell. Rows felt strong - I could have done more but I wanted to focus on getting the bar moving quickly instead of going a little heavier.

    It was interesting trying out the power clean technique - I'll probably do some power cleans on my lower DE day from now on. I know they're not recommended but as far as I can tell they fit in pretty well there. It was a bit much doing them today after front squats and step ups yesterday though, as my quads are now completely wrecked.

    I'm hoping I'm recovered alright for a heavy lower session on Monday. We've got a guy called Richard Patman coming in to coach us (former british powerlifting champion and world bench press champion, apparently) and if all goes well we may be getting him to coach us more regularly next year (assuming I'm still in Cambridge). As we've got him coming on monday, my session will be modified so that I'll be both deadlifting and squatting (probably deadlifting first and squatting less heavily afterwards) so I'll scale back on the other exercises.
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    Can't really see the point in the power cleans unless you want to be an Oly lifter or play football at an American college, mate.
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    They're fun?
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    (Original post by Smack)
    Can't really see the point in the power cleans unless you want to be an Oly lifter or play football at an American college, mate.
    I'm thinking of doing sprinting next year. Also, they seem like a pretty handy exercise for sport in general.
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    You can get the same benefits (triple extension) with other exercises without the wrist, shoulder and CNS strain of power cleans.
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    With what sort of thing? I suppose high pulls are the most obvious simpler alternative.
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    Anything that requires triple extensions. Jump training is the most widely used and I've got a lot of info about that from Russian text that I haven't read yet, but check out Joe Defranco and Kelly Bagget for a Western perspective on it.
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    (Original post by Smack)
    Anything that requires triple extensions. Jump training is the most widely used and I've got a lot of info about that from Russian text that I haven't read yet, but check out Joe Defranco and Kelly Bagget for a Western perspective on it.
    This is a good point actually, I've not had the chance to do jump training yet because I think I missed DE lower sessions before and yesterday I didn't think my shins were up to anything involving impact. There's a lovely wall in my garden I need to try jumps onto so if the weather is still good next Friday I'll be doing some jumps rather than power cleans. I'll see how each goes, but I'd quite like to do power cleans for their own sake.
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    Ok session today. Technically it was pretty good there because we had an experienced coach there with lots of good information for us and I hit a new best (without the belt) deadlift, but I just didn't really feel that switched on.

    Deadlift
    60 x5
    90 x5
    110 x3
    120 x2
    130 x1
    135 x1
    140 x1
    145 x0

    110 x3

    Good mornings
    50 x5
    50 x5
    50 x5


    Also a little bit of benching (70 x4 at the top).

    I think my deadlifts are really starting to come together. My max hasn't gone up that much yet (though today put 5kg on my previous best without the belt, and is only 5kg less than I've done with the belt) but I just feel a lot more solid. The 110 x3 before the singles was notably very fast and felt like nothing. I just need to translate my better form into heavier weights now. To be honest I probably could have got 145 if I'd had a better day and was more switched on, but I didn't really feel like I was on top of everything this session.

    The coach was talking about the benefits of doing quite a high volume of squats today and it made me realise just how little squatting I'm doing at the moment. It doesn't worry me too much because I'm confident about my squatting but I will be putting more in my routine.
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    (Original post by Chumbaniya)
    Ok session today. Technically it was pretty good there because we had an experienced coach there with lots of good information for us and I hit a new best (without the belt) deadlift, but I just didn't really feel that switched on.

    Deadlift
    60 x5
    90 x5
    110 x3
    120 x2
    130 x1
    135 x1
    140 x1
    145 x0

    110 x3

    Good mornings
    50 x5
    50 x5
    50 x5


    Also a little bit of benching (70 x4 at the top).

    I think my deadlifts are really starting to come together. My max hasn't gone up that much yet (though today put 5kg on my previous best without the belt, and is only 5kg less than I've done with the belt) but I just feel a lot more solid. The 110 x3 before the singles was notably very fast and felt like nothing. I just need to translate my better form into heavier weights now. To be honest I probably could have got 145 if I'd had a better day and was more switched on, but I didn't really feel like I was on top of everything this session.

    The coach was talking about the benefits of doing quite a high volume of squats today and it made me realise just how little squatting I'm doing at the moment. It doesn't worry me too much because I'm confident about my squatting but I will be putting more in my routine.
    Our lifts are almost identical, so bizarre. :p:

    Hit 80kg bench the other day, and 140kg dead. What sorta height/weight you at?
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    (Original post by mituozo)
    Our lifts are almost identical, so bizarre. :p:

    Hit 80kg bench the other day, and 140kg dead. What sorta height/weight you at?
    I'm 5'8'' and as far as I'm aware (no access to scales) I should be about 72kg now. I think I might be higher on squats since my deadlift is atrocious (best deadlift and squat are both 145kg with a belt).
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    A good day today. Not the repetition upper session that I was supposed to do (partly because my shoulder is funny and I benched a bit yesterday, partly because I wanted to squat) but lots of good stuff.

    Overhead Press
    20 x10
    40 x5
    50 x4
    50 x4
    50 x4
    50 x3

    Rows

    50 x6
    65 x6
    65 x6
    65 x6

    Squats

    20 x8
    65 x5
    85 x4
    100 x3
    100 x3
    100 x3
    100 x3
    100 x3

    Skull Crushers

    EZ-bar+0 x8
    Bar+10 x8
    Bar+15 x8
    Bar+15 x8
    Bar+15 x8


    Overhead press felt strong. It's a shame I didn't get the last rep but I was being reasonably ambitious and my shoulders aren't quite right at the moment (though overhead pressing is much easier on them than benching). Similarly to last time with the rows, I could have gone a bit heavier but I really like doing them with more speed and it's definitely paying off - I've got so much more power on them than I used to.

    Squats today were excellent. It's the first time in a while that I've squatted but they were very quick, very deep and my technique felt totally sound. I even had one of the other guys in the gym comment on them being very deep and smooth. It's the first time I've done skull crushers so they weren't exactly on the limit but they felt alright and seemed to hit the triceps as intended so I'll keep them in mind in the future.
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    Have you tried doing your overhead presses with a false grip? I got the advice from one of wendler's columns in T-Nation and it works out better for me...
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    (Original post by The Blind Monk)
    Have you tried doing your overhead presses with a false grip? I got the advice from one of wendler's columns in T-Nation and it works out better for me...
    What do you mean by a false grip? I don't ever feel like I'm having trouble with the way I grip the bar and I think my form is good so I wouldn't worry too much about changing things, but I could give it a go.
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    A false grip is a grip with your thumbs on the same side as your fingers. Oddly enough the groove feels a lot more natural. Obviously you'd still need to focus on the 'corkscrew' of trying to break the bar apart and staying tight, both of which are slightly less natural with a thumbless grip but I like it. My press has certainly gone up after the switch.
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    Solid session today. My benching was made substantially poorer by my shoulder still playing up (no flat barbell benching for the next week to let them have some time off) but everything else was good.

    Squat
    20 x8
    70 x5
    90 x4
    110 x2
    110 x2
    110 x2
    110 x2
    110 x2
    110 x2

    Bench

    60 x5
    70 x5
    70 x5
    70 x5

    Shrug
    85 x12
    85 x12
    85 x12

    Good Morning

    20 x8
    50 x6
    60 x6
    60 x6
    60 x6

    Hanging Leg Raise
    x8
    x8
    x8


    Squats were very good - most of them super deep like last session, and they all felt strong. In the later sets I was a bit slower through the middle of the lift but it was never a grind and they were generally pretty quick. All the reps went up alright on the bench but I fatigued unnaturally quickly - in the first set I was barely working and in the last set I had to work quite hard for the last rep. Shoulder rest should make it all better.

    Shrugs are now feeling more natural and I've definitely noticed that my traps are looking a bit better since I started them. I've yet to work out exactly how they're supposed to help my strength in a particularly relevant way but they don't appear to take away from any of the important stuff. Good mornings were fine - a shaky start after I troubled my hamstring doing them without warming up properly the other day, but this only affected the warm-up sets and the work sets hit the hamstrings hard without any undue pain. Not much you can say about leg raises - I did them, presumably my abs will thank me later for it.
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    A bit of a mixed bag today, but it was a mixed bag that contained some big front squats so I'm pretty happy with it.

    Started off with some power cleans for technique. My shoulders didn't like these so I didn't do many.

    Front Squat
    40 x3
    60 x3
    80 x3
    90 x3
    95 x2
    100 x2
    105 x1 - PB

    DB Row

    22.5 x10
    31 x8
    36 x6

    Shoulder didn't like it so I move on

    Chin up
    x6
    x3


    Shoulder still didn't like it

    Curlz
    EZ-bar x10
    bar+10 x8
    bar+15 x8
    bar+15 x8
    bar+15 x8


    I was stunned by how easy the front squats were. I've never done more than 85kg before, and that was last week, the first time I'd done them in about two months. The only difficulty was that I wasn't used to them so it got a bit uncomfortable on my shoulders (that and the fact that not having been anywhere near that weight before I didn't want to push it too hard). Every rep was pretty much as deep as it could have been and went up quickly. Overall I've had a great week of squats, though today was probably the best day - it does highlight how my quad strength is ahead of my hamstring and lower back strength, though.

    Everything else today was just made a bit of a pain by my shoulders. I felt very strong on the rows and could have done more but I need to give my shoulders a rest as much as possible now. I'll skip my session on monday since I don't want to do any significant lower body stuff after three days squatting this week and I want to give my shoulders a chance to recover before I do much upper body work again. On tuesday I'll probably do deadlifts and good mornings, probably with some grip work. I might do some deficit deadlifts aswell.
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    Good job on the front squatting!
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    Pretty crappy session today but I didn't expect much since I slept badly and I didn't eat too well on Sunday/Monday. Called it off early after not doing that much stuff since I need to focus on a work deadline tomorrow (and the stress certainly didn't help my lifting).

    Deadlift
    70 x5
    100 x4
    120 x2
    mixed grip for work sets (not really needed tbh)
    135 x2
    135 x1


    Deficit deadlift (standing on a 3-4 inch box)
    70 x6
    70 x6
    70 x6

    DB static hold
    36 x ~30s
    41 x ~20s


    I suppose I can't really complain about the deadlifts that much because I've never done more than 1 rep with anything higher than 130, but they were slow and ugly. My lower back didn't feel like it was at its best either. On a good day I would have got 3 sets of 2 at 135 and they wouldn't have been so slow. I didn't actually fail in the second set, I just thought the first rep was so poor that I wouldn't do another. I decided to do some deficit deadlifts because I know my weak point is still the first few inches of the deadlift - they weren't properly hard at that weight but I certainly felt it more than I expected.

    EDIT: Also did a few handstand pressups against a wall. Got 10 out without much trouble and my shoulders aren't feeling too bad, so hopefully I'll be ok to overhead press on thursday and maybe bench on saturday if all goes well. We shall see.
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    Useless session today. Work screwed me over on tuesday so I was up until 6am on Wednesday morning and I'm still tired now. I've also been kept awake coughing in the night and my eating has been inconsistent - about 4500kcal on tuesday and about 1500kcal on wednesday. This needs sorting out but it shouldn't be a problem now my project is done and I can focus on getting into a sensible revision routine.

    Squat
    20 x8
    60 x5
    90 x5
    100 x3
    110 x3
    110 x3

    90 x3

    Overhead press
    20 x8
    40 x5
    45 x3
    50 x5
    50 x3

    Rows

    50 x6
    70 x5
    70 x5
    70 x5

    Good mornings
    50 x5
    50 x5
    50 x5

    Shrug
    90 x10
    90 x10
    90 x10


    Squats were slow and ugly. 110 felt miles heavier than it did last week but given the state I was in today that's not surprising. Overhead press wasn't great as the issue I had with my right shoulder seems to have gone but transfered to my left shoulder, but if I can get 5 reps with 50 out on a really bad day I guess that's alright. Rows, surprisingly, were very good - plenty of speed on the bar and good form for all of them. Good mornings were pretty standard but I didn't do as many reps or as much weight as I normally might. Shrugs were ok but I probably won't up the weight for a bit as I don't feel I was shrugging it quite as high as I should be.
 
 
 
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